New Community Partners!
Contact: Merrill Sikorski, (907) 262-4949
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
CARING FOR THE KENAI MOVES TO CHALLENGER LEARNING CENTER…
Kenai, Alaska August 17, 2015– As the Caring for the Kenai (CFK) environmental awareness contest and community partnership begins its 26th year it will be transitioning as an educational program administered by the Kenai Watershed Forum to a program under the umbrella of the Challenger Learning Center of Alaska. “The CFK program has evolved into an educational curriculum that meets state and national standards for science and language arts. It is now available for licensing to any school district anywhere. To accommodate the need for a national 501(c)3 organization to administer the program, the Challenger Center of Alaska has stepped up to champion the competition,” explained CFK creator Merrill Sikorski. The local CFK will continue unchanged in the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District with Tesoro continuing as the program’s signature sponsor.
“The community and industry support over the last quarter century for CFK has been truly amazing and is a model for the world. We can all be proud to have contributed to creating an educational partnership that can change the way we address environmental challenges,” said Sikorski.
“Caring for the Kenai has long been an excellent partner with KPBSD. The opportunities for students to develop rigorous and relevant projects that make a difference in our local communities demonstrates best educational practice that enriches what is happening in our classrooms. Our teachers have also benefited by developing creative activities and lessons that make their classrooms come alive in meaningful and thought provoking ways. Many of the skills our students will need in their future are fostered within this program. We look forward to many more years of partnering with Caring for the Kenai,” said KPBSD Superintendent Sean Dusek.
“We have seen great projects that are benefiting our environment and quality of life come out of the CFK program. The Kenai Watershed Forum will continue to support student driven ideas in our community and are happy to see the growth of the CFK program” said Robert Ruffner, KWF executive director.
“The Challenger Mission to inspire students in the science, technology, engineering and math disciplines while connecting with the relationships and applications to real world situations creates a seamless backdrop for a program such as Caring for Kenai that was designed to have students think of creative ideas to help their local environment and prepare for natural disasters. The opportunities available to our students through these two long standing, proven programs is an example of how partnerships can have a much greater impact by working together,” said Marnie Olcott, CEO Challenger Learning Center of Alaska.
“As a longtime sponsor of the CFK program, Tesoro is proud of the unique educational opportunities the program has provided to students across the Kenai Peninsula. The type of innovative thinking and sustainable programs that have grown out of this annual event reflect the commitment to safety and the environment valued by both Tesoro and the Kenai community.” said Kenai Refinery Manager Cameron Hunt.
To celebrate a quarter of a century of our kids ideas a joint Kenai & Soldotna chamber meeting will be held Wednesday, October 7th where a 25 years of CFK in review video will be presented.